Ferrets are playful, intelligent, and clumsy housepets. New or old ferret owners know that ferrets fall frequently. Because ferrets can take fall damage, they are considered high maintenance pets that need a watchful eye when not in their cage. Preventing ferrets from taking fall damage is an important part of proper ferret care.
When it comes to ferrets and heights, fall damage is any kind of injury that a ferret might experience if it falls from too high. So how high is too high? Keep reading for answers to questions such as do ferrets take fall damage? How far can ferrets fall? And do ferrets land on their feet?
Do Ferrets Take Fall Damage?
Yes, ferrets take fall damage. Though ferrets love climbing, they do so at their own risk. Ferrets have poor depth perception, a love for jumping, and a fragile skeletal structure. What injures a ferret the most is the improper landing on a hard surface, not the fall itself. Sadly, fall damage to a ferret could result in spinal cord injuries that lead to paralysis, broken bones, or death.
The golden rule for a ferret owner to follow is to reduce hard surfaces where a ferret is most likely to take fall damage.
How far can ferrets fall?
There is no hard and fast rule for the exact distance a ferret can fall without getting injured. Sometimes it can fall from impressive heights and be just fine once the initial shock has worn off. Other times, they can jump from a low distance and land improperly. Unfortunately, this can result in injury or death.
Ferrets are clumsy critters and are prone to falling and bad footing. Ferrets fall more often than other pets because they lack depth perception. These furry friends can’t determine how close or far an object is the same way humans can.
A ferret is likely to fall many times in its life simply because they are uncoordinated yet fearless and persistent climbers. They love to jump despite their inability to determine how far. Their activeness coupled with fragile bones means that if a ferret falls and lands wrong, the ferret can become seriously injured.
The lifespan of a pet ferret is between five to ten years. Ferrets bought from a pet store tend to live in the shorter range, while those purchased from a reputable breeder live longer. However, ferrets are susceptible to many health-related issues that could reduce their lifespan, including a ferret taking fall damage.
Ferrets do not land on their feet all the time. Though, they can do so from a safe height. Ferrets do not have the agility or anatomy to correct their positioning if they fall or jump from a high distance. If a ferret falls onto a hard surface, fall damage can result in broken bones or brain injuries. These should be looked at immediately by a vet.
Ferrets are fearless, so completely avoiding falls is a difficult goal to achieve. It’s best to make the necessary precautions and adjustments to minimize the fall damage a ferret takes by ferret-proofing the rooms where it roams free.
Ferret proofing can be done by:
- Putting soft blankets and pillows in places where it may decide to leap.
- Moving small furniture away from taller furniture that could tempt the ferret to climb.
- Consider what is attracting the animal to unsafe spots and make any necessary adjustments to deter the behavior.
- Setting up netting in high-risk areas to catch it before it hits the floor.
- Regular nail trimming to avoid a ferret trying to maneuver itself out of what it’s stuck on, which could result in a fall or injury.
- By wearing a collar with bell in, so you always know where your ferret is.
A ferret can be trained not to climb in unsafe places. If a pet owner sees their ferret climbing, calmly approach it and safely return it to the floor or its cage. It’s important not to encourage a ferret when climbing on the furniture or high ledges. Marshall Bandits premium ferret treats are a great way to distract a ferret away from risky locations and help pet owners bond with their pets.
Get to know each ferret and understand their behavior. Understanding the ferret allows pet owners to better determine if a fall has just briefly shocked the pet or if it needs more serious attention. If ever unsure about whether a ferret has fallen from too high a distance, it’s always best to consult a vet for added peace of mind.
Do ferrets take fall damage? Yes, they can. But, with proper ferret proofing and vigilance, a ferret parent will have years of fun with their furry friend.